Proptech Growth Strategy Brief Newsletter

Getaway Growth Strategy

Getaway allows users to escape the city with high-end tiny home campsites outside major cities across the U.S.

http://getaway.house

"Grain of Salt" Warning: I write this newsletter with an outsider's understanding of the business in question. I am likely to make mistakes, leaps of judgement, and assumptions - that's what makes it fun.

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We humans flock to cities for many reasons - jobs, lifestyle, and the promise of finding your tribe. But accessing these benefits comes with obvious tradeoffs, as spending a Saturday morning fighting outbound traffic from any major center will make abundantly clear. We love our cities, but we also love getting away from them.

Enter Getaway. They've packaged the idea of escaping the city for a nature break, and deliver by dropping a pack of well-designed and well-equipped tiny homes into a woodlot outside major cities like Chicago and Austin. Like many startups, Getaway is built at the intersection of a few converging trends, even without mentioning COVID and reinvention of local travel.

First, tiny homes. Their promised simplicity has recently helped them hit the mainstream, but are largely inaccessible unless you buy one for yourself.

Secondly, self care. Our era is one of destabilized employment and professional burnout, and taking time for ourselves is becoming more and more justifiable.

Finally, social media's impact on travel and experiences. The things we spend our money on are becoming more performative, and the story behind what we choose to do both impact our likelihood of taking part in it and that experience's ability to ride a virality wave when its users tell their networks about it.

At its core, Getaway is a scalable campsite business, marketed towards an emerging use case and counting on repeat business from local city dwellers. Here's how I think they could unlock new levels of growth.

Acquisition

The easiest way to sell a hospitality customer is to appear where they're already looking. There are two obvious opportunities here, one owned and one leveraging marketplaces.

Targeting paid search ads and potentially SEO optimized landing pages for keywords targeting users in a given city looking to escape is a good place to start. Terms like "Glamping Chicago", "Cabin Chicago", "tiny home chicago" have solid volume and low competition.

Start here, and don't forget to add Google My Business pages for all locations - they're not showing up on maps when you search "Getaway [city]"

On the marketplace side, I'd go all in listing your sites on Airbnb and Hipcamp. Invest in automation here early, and try to convert users (either digitally or on location) into direct customers the next time they book - this will help pay for the platform transaction fees.

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Colin here. If you're building or growing a real estate or hospitality tech company, you should sign up to my newsletter Proptech Growth Strategy Brief. Every week, I write a 3-point growth strategy for a real estate or hospitality startup, just like this one. Join the fun!

Activation

There are two core paths we want to optimize for here - users who want to book now, and users who might book later.

For the former group, we need to improve the location pages. This is an extremely Instagrammable product, so investing in quality photography of the spaces and the grounds will go a long way. The more the better in this regard. Pull reviews in for each location as well, and optimize the location pages for search - maybe "Tiny Home Rental in [City]"

For folks not ready to book, trade their email for a discount code - if someone is interested in a particular city, you know they'll still be in your market later. Make sure you nurture these leads via email, as well with regular newsletters to keep them warm.

Retention/Referral

You're parked right outside the city your ideal customer lives in - this product is a repeat buyer product. Lean into that. The Getaway Often program is a good start, but building a more exponential and varied customer loyalty program would also go a long way to extend customer LTV. Offer either accumulating discounts or credit, or other lower-cost goodies and perks (like event invites, late checkout and the like) to encourage longer and more frequent bookings.

That's it for today.  Thanks for reading!

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See you in two weeks,

Colin

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